NATION

Call for Supporters to Restock Reefs

The grassroots campaign to revive kawakawa and donu stocks kicks off today building on two successful years of pledges from across Fiji to forego the killing of these species during
01 Jun 2016 09:02
Call for Supporters to Restock Reefs

The grassroots campaign to revive kawakawa and donu stocks kicks off today building on two successful years of pledges from across Fiji to forego the killing of these species during their peak breeding months.

In its first two years, the campaign received more than 8500 pledges from people across Fiji and across sectors, potentially reducing the market by 85,000 fish each year, based on Suva consumption surveys.

The 4FJ campaign asks people from all walks of life to forego the fish during their peak breeding months, June through September, so they can replenish the reefs. Kawakawa and donu, known as grouper in English, have been rapidly declining over the past several decades, with catches decreasing 70 per cent in 30 years.

“We are starting to turn the tide on this critical issue,” said founder of non-profit organisation Change (formerly SeaWeb Pacific) Scott Radway.

Mr Radway said the pledge count is much higher than the formally- documented 8500, as many people have reported to take the pledge privately, and the many government and NGO partners have brought the campaign to rural areas of Fiji, where the written pledge lists are not created.

Part of the success of the campaign has been the many partnerships developed across sectors. The campaign partnered with churches, traditional leaders, resorts, restaurants, including Jack’s of Fiji’s establishments across the country, and with corporate leaders such as Digicel Fiji. Partners engaged their network to bring the campaign message far and wide.

Similar new partnerships will be announced this year.

The campaign has also enlisted prominent role models to carry the message, such as coach Ben Ryan and his two-time world champion 7s team, music sensation Makare, and Miss Hibiscus 2015, Marie Fall. More champions are lined up for 2016, the campaign said.

In 2016, 4FJ will be working with the Fiji Fisheries Department to foster greater dialogue with fishers, fishers associations and fish sellers as well as communities.

To pledge, people can call 7189537 or just text (1) your name, (2) village or town, and (3) “I pledge.”
Source: 4FJ

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